Paul Laurence Dunbar's girls, who finished the regular season with a rush — six victories in a row — were in successful hurry-up mode in their first game of the post-season, too.
The No. 23 Bulldogs, playing at a fast pace but also capitalizing on their strong inside game, beat Tates Creek 78-63 in the semifinals of the 43rd District at Lexington Christian on Tuesday night.
Dunbar, the defending district and region champs, had everything working in an impressive performance.
Lakeena Parks and Brooke Todd dominated inside. Parks, a 5-foot-10 senior, had 24 points and eight rebounds. Todd, a 6-2 junior, had 15 points and 16 rebounds.
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"We're bigger than most teams so we need to take advantage of that," Coach Sarah Bridenbaugh said.
Dunbar's guards are also quicker than most opponents, another strength they exploit. Against Tates Creek they attacked the rim in transition and in the half-court. Lexus Edwards led the way with 20 points. Jordin Fender had 11 and Shakeema Jackson added eight.
"We hit our stride about two weeks ago," Bridenbaugh said. "We're playing our best ball at the best time."
Tates Creek split two regular-season games against Dunbar, including a 53-50 win in mid-January. But the Commodores couldn't keep up with the Bulldogs in this elimination game.
Katie Pippen, a 5-8 senior who signed with EKU, led Tates Creek with 22 points, nine rebounds and four assists. Oney Harrison, a 5-6 senior headed to St. Bonaventure, had 21 points and six rebounds.
Dunbar will play Wednesday's Lafayette-Lexington Catholic winner in Friday's district finals.
Paul Dunbar 78, Tates Creek 63
TATES CREEK (10-18) — Harrison 21, Pippen 22, Etling-Turner 13, Whaley 1, Evans 6.
PAUL DUNBAR (16-10) — Parks 24, Todd 15, Edwards 20, Fender 11, Jackson 8.
Tates Creek 13 9 21 20—63
Paul Dunbar 16 17 18 27—78